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Spontaneous local increases in the concentration of intracellular calcium, called "calcium sparks," were detected in quiescent rat heart cells with a laser scanning confocal microscope and the fluorescent calcium indicator fluo-3. Estimates of calcium flux associated with the sparks suggest that calcium sparks result from spontaneous openings of single(More)
A model of calcium movement during activation of frog skeletal muscle is described. The model was based on the half sarcomere of a myofibril and included compartments representing the terminal cisternae, the longitudinal sarcoplasmic reticulum, the extramyofibrillar space, and the myofibrillar space. The calcium-binding proteins troponin, parvalbumin, and(More)
Cardiac hypertrophy and heart failure caused by high blood pressure were studied in single myocytes taken from hypertensive rats (Dahl SS/Jr) and SH-HF rats in heart failure. Confocal microscopy and patch-clamp methods were used to examine excitation-contraction (EC) coupling, and the relation between the plasma membrane calcium current (ICa) and evoked(More)
The mechanism that links membrane potential changes to the release of calcium from internal stores to cause contraction of cardiac cells is unclear. By using the calcium indicator fura-2 under voltage-clamp conditions, changes in intracellular calcium could be monitored in single rat ventricular cells while controlling membrane potential. The voltage(More)
The transverse tubular system (t-system) of cardiac muscle is a structure that allows rapid propagation of excitation into the cell interior. Using 2-photon molecular excitation microscopy and digital image-processing methods, we have obtained a comprehensive overview of the t-system of rat ventricular myocytes in living cells. We show that it is possible(More)
Extracellular ATP has multimodal actions in the cochlea affecting hearing sensitivity. ATP-gated ion channels involved in this process were characterized in the guinea pig cochlea. Voltage-clamped hair cells exhibited a P2 receptor pharmacology compatible with the assembly of ATP-gated ion channels from P2X(2) receptor subunits. Reverse transcription-PCR(More)
Computer simulation was used to investigate the calcium levels after sarcolemmal calcium influx through L-type calcium channels (DHPRs) into the narrow diadic space of cardiac muscle. The effect of various cytosolic and membranebound buffers, diad geometry, DHPR properties (open time and current), and surface charge were examined. The simulations showed(More)
Local elevations in intracellular calcium ("Ca2+ sparks") in heart muscle are elementary sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) Ca(2+)-release events. Ca2+ sparks occur at a low rate in quiescent cells but can also be evoked by electrical stimulation of the cell to produce the cell-wide Ca2+ transient. In this study we investigate how Ca2+ sparks are related to(More)
The intracellular calcium ([Ca2+]i) transient in adult rat heart cells was examined using the fluorescent calcium indicator fluo-3 and a laser scanning confocal microscope. We find that the electrically evoked [Ca2+]i transient does not rise at a uniform rate at all points within the cell during the [Ca2+]i transient. These spatial non-uniformities in(More)